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Centennial events honor a century of staff diversity

STANFORD -- "Honoring 100 Years of Staff Diversity," a month-long commemoration, begins with a Stanford centennial event in White Plaza on Friday, April 26, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

A fair will offer ethnic foods and crafts for sale, cultural performances, music, a fashion show by Jerusha of Palo Alto and free beverages, commemorative buttons and balloons.

The festivities will include a raffle drawing every 10 minutes. Drawings are scheduled for 12:30 p.m. for three grand prizes: one night's lodging at the Half Moon Bay Lodge, the Stanford Park Hotel and the newly renovated Stanford Terrace Inn.

Staff members must bring the event invitation sent to them through interdepartmental mail to qualify for the raffle.

The fair is sponsored by various staff groups, the Office for Multicultural Development and the Centennial Operating Committee.

In addition to the fair, the month-long celebration will feature an exhibition in Meyer Library depicting staff contributions to the University through the years. In addition, staff and student groups have planned numerous other multicultural events during May.

Among the staff groups participating are:

  • The African American Staff Group. The organization was created in 1988, but already 20 years ago, black staffers were developing community relations in such organized groups as Black Caucus. The group provides support and networking for African Americans on campus and in the surrounding community. Black staff members often have served as a "safety net" for students on campus, serving as surrogate parents, helping the students focus on their academic and career objectives, and doing everything from lending money and typing papers to preparing special meals.

As a group, black staff members were instrumental in supporting the model entry-level job program, Stanford Employment Experience; advising about upcoming jobs in their departments; mentoring new staff members; and encouraging people of color to apply for employment at Stanford. The group's members also have served with the Youth Opportunity Program, which helps disadvantaged young people in surrounding communities.

Members have worked with the University Committee on Minority Issues, Affirmative Action Council, Office for Multicultural Development, student recruitment and External Affirmative Action Committee.

For more information, contact Clare Phillips, CR.CXP@Forsythe, 723-3484.

  • The American Indian Staff Forum was organized in 1988 to increase visibility of Indian employees and their issues, as well as to provide a regular occasion for Indian employees to meet and share common experiences. Although few in number, members represent a diverse tribal background, inviting opportunities for cultural education both inside the group and with the larger University community.

The forum's goals include improving Indian employee recruitment and working with the Human Resources staff at campus events, such as the annual Powwow, as well as off campus in San Jose and San Francisco. The forum also assists networking with Bay Area Indian organizations, coordinates an annual pancake brunch and arranges outings to various locations in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Among its recent events was a discussion of Stanford as an "addictive environment" and the role of spirituality in work.

For more information, contact Derrick Rainbow, 725- 3356.

  • The Asian Staff Forum, an informal group of Asian/Pacific/Indian Subcontinent employees, was formed in 1986 to promote networking and skills development. One of its goals is to inform senior administrators about cultural differences of different Asian nationalities and how these might affect individuals' performance and advancement.

The forum has sponsored receptions, published a newsletter, been host to brown-bag lunch speakers and a panel discussion, organized cultural performances, provided support for Asian employees with personnel problems and conducted a skills workshop.

The group has worked closely with the University Committee on Minority Issues, the Human Resources office, the Stanford Literacy Project, the Office for Multicultural Development, students at the Asian American Activities Center, and outside organizations such as the Asian Pacific Personnel Association and the Asian Business League.

For more information, contact Elsa Tsutaoka at HF.EKT@Forsythe, 723-3681, or the Asian American Activities Center, Old Union Clubhouse, 3-3064.

  • The Disability Staff Forum, formed in 1989, serves as a forum for staff and faculty both with and without disabilities to share common concerns and address problems related to accessibility and employment. Issues include promoting recruiting of the disabled, tracking any "repositioning" effects on current disabled employees, and seeking to ensure that benefits packages are helpful and useful to the disabled community.

The group meets from noon to 1 p.m. on the third Tuesday of the month in a conference room at 857 Serra. Anyone seeking a sign language or oral interpreter should contact the Disability Resource Center at least one week in advance. (Call 723-1066 for voice calls, 723-1067 for TDD calls.)

For more information, contact Ken Wright at GE.KCW@Forsythe or 725-0397; Connie Burton at CM.CWB@Forsythe or 723-1066; or Kimberly Griffin at KA.KIM@Forsythe or 723- 0358.

  • The Filipino American Staff Forum was founded in late 1988, when Filipino staff members decided to organize a campus group to promote Filipino ethnicity and tradition, provide a common forum dealing with work-related issues and build unity among the diverse Filipino constituency at Stanford.

Recently, the group has conducted staff development courses for the Filipino community and raised funds to help victims of the earthquake that hit the Philippines a year ago. Last December, the group sang Filipino Christmas carols to guests of President and Mrs. Donald Kennedy at Lou Henry Hoover House. The group also holds cooperative ventures with the Asian Staff Forum.

For more information, contact Tito E. Gervacio, GE.TEG@Forsythe, 725-0386.

  • In 1981, La Raza Staff Association was organized to improve the status and presence of Chicano/Latino staff. It has appeared before the President's Task Force on Personnel Policies and Administration, written recommendations for developing human resource principles and proposed a 10-point program to address working conditions, promotions and hiring of Chicano/Latino staff. The association also testified before the University Committee on Minority Issues on these issues. The association also joined forces with the African American, Asian American, American Indian and Filipino staff associations to form a minority staff coalition.

La Raza produces a newsletter, offers cultural activities and coordinates programs and events with students to establish mentoring and supportive relationships. It also supports a student scholarship and research internships.

For more information, contact Hector Cuevas, EA.HXC@Forsythe or 723-2426; Tom Castillo, AT.TCC, 723-3314; Victoria Sanchez, CA.VIC@Forsythe or 723-3542.

  • Out at Stanford has its roots in a group of lesbian, gay, and bisexual employees that began meeting in 1970 to discuss support services for students. This early group was instrumental in helping to form the Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Community Center for students, staff and faculty, and in developing the University's sexual preference non-discrimination clause and student domestic partners policy.

The current organization was formed in 1990, bringing together faculty, students and staff from a variety of informal campus networks. Its primary goals are to advocate benefits parity (for example, the domestic partners initiative); to encourage academic, intellectual and social programs that address issues of concern, such as curriculum review and research on such topics as the role of coming out in appointment, promotion or tenure decisions; and to formalize mentoring relationships with students and serve as role models for students who are under pressure while coming out.

For more information contact Tom Holt, CN.THJ@Forsythe, 725-1112.

  • Stanford Staffers began in 1951 as the Distaff Club, a group of women staff members who gathered for lunch and companionship. Faculty wives served as sponsors, hosting teas and luncheons at their campus homes. Ann Sterling, wife of the late President J.E. Wallace Sterling, was the founding faculty wife-sponsor.

In 1978, the group agreed to admit men and changed its name to Stanford Staffers. Organization goals include providing career support and sharing resources, networking, doing community service, developing and cultivating a diverse workplace and enjoying social contacts. Its activities range from monthly lectures on subjects as diverse as public service and tax planning to an "attitude adjustment hour," held every other month at a restaurant lounge after work.

Special events include a wine sampling and food tasting event at Governor's Corner, an annual holiday party at Hoover House, a shopping trip to Vacaville and a spring fling potluck in June. This year a special celebration is planned May 3 in honor of the group's 40th birthday.

Besides social events, Stanford Staffers also holds garage sales and clothing drives to benefit the Battered Women's Shelter in Mountain View.

For more information, contact Eileen Demmis, FE.EMD@Forsythe, 725-2343.



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